Non-methane, non-CO2 greenhouse gases are comprised primarily of fluorinated gases, commonly referred to as F-gases. F-gases are most frequently used as refrigerants. Emissions from F-gases occur during product manufacturing as gases leak or are intentionally vented into the atmosphere, as well as via leaks over the lifetime of a product, and finally once the product is no longer in use if not disposed of properly.
The most direct way to prevent F-gas emissions is to set a standard to phase them down. Europe, for example, has set limits on the total amount of F-gases that can be sold from 2015 onwards, phasing them down in steps to 20% of 2014 sales by 2030.
As a complement to the phase-down of F-gas sales, Europe has also banned the use of F-gases in many new types of equipment (e.g., fridges, air conditioners) where alternatives are available. In addition, Europe requires periodic checks of existing equipment, as well as recovery of the gases at the end of the equipment’s life.
Taken together, these policies can materially reduce F-gas emissions and unleash innovation around cleaner, safer alternatives.